Val's Journal - September 28, 2002

Cruising at 110kmh, writing at 60wpm…

Next stop: Brandon, Manitoba. Erik's behind the wheel so stuff is flying…(Actually, in fairness to Mr. E— the length of our whale on wheels, 34 air-displacing feet, means that anything or anybody at the back gets torqued around corners 10 times faster than anything up front. A tiny adjustment at the wheel translates into a tempest of flying human bodies, books and computer printers in the rear.) We’re in for a five-hour drive: elbow pads recommended.

These long drives have turned into luxurious vacations where we can each turn to our separate passions. A few chords on the guitar, a therapeutic journal entry, a meditation or perhaps a call home, “yes, I’m eating enough…” We all mind our own business till there’s something to gawk at: a giant Ukrainian egg or larger than life hot dog. The road kill too has been charming: messy little fur coats turned inside out. Still, prairie driving has its frosted side, you’re at least guaranteed an excellent sunset every day or a view of a grain elevator big as a city tower. We’ve made a habit of doing as much driving while it’s light so that we can honestly say we saw Canada, not that we just drove across it.

Regina was text book: we hit all our media goals, had one of our best encounters with a school in White City (just 10km outside Regina) and still have the rosy cheeks to prove that we attended a CFL game, Saskatchewan Roughriders vs. Ottawa Renegades.

White City was absolutely different. Any town that declares itself worth visiting strictly because of the size of its burgers has to be given a chance. Such bravado I thought, but after munching on a patty as big as a flapjack I was a convert: surely this is worth defining a city by, why not?

White City offered more than just heartburn though. We spoke at the local school, a gym, 500 midgets full. To start off the presentation and to raise the energy level of the student body I opened with: “OK, lets hear
White City scream…” It was like standing at the bottom of a mountain and asking to see an avalanche then politely asking it to stop. The collective wailing reached a point where even we started to wince…the kind of screaming that shakes the ear drums so deeply you feel your balance going.

The screaming did eventually subside and we had one of the best times yet at a school: radiant and receptive children totally hooked on giving back. At the end of it all they presented us with a huge care package and sent us off with huge smiles and more positive fuel for the next day. It just keeps getting better.

Nov. 6th, 2002
Oct. 31, 2002
Oct. 25, 2002
Oct. 24, 2002
Sept. 30, 2002
Sept. 28, 2002
Sept. 24, 2002
Sept. 22, 2002
Sept. 12, 2002
Nov. 7, 2002
Oct. 21, 2002
Oct. 4, 2002
Sept. 25, 2002
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Sept. 19, 2002
Sept. 08, 2002

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